by Al Myers
(The following meet report was written by Bill Clark in the July 5th, 2006 edition of the Strength Journal, Vol. XVII No. 3.)
OLLENNUKING, MYERS BEST IN USAWA
Salina, Kan., June 17 – Al Myers did what few have been able to do in the past – direct a national championship and then win the best lifter award. Normally, the guy with all the administrative problems performs sub-par. Not so here!
Al put together an outstanding championship meet in a great venue – the Holiday Inn Select – and topped it off with a buffet fit for the biggest hogs around.
Al won the meet with a 2800-pound harness lift following a 600 deadlift. He needed every pound to beat his 19-year-old gym mate, Ian Reel, who also logged a 2800 harness lift and left little doubt that he’s a contender for USAWA championships for many years to come.
Amorkor Ollennuking was on hand, easily winning the women’s title and finishing seventh overall – regardless of gender, weight or age…. a magnificent performance.
There was one problem with the weekend – Al gave a great party and almost no one came.
The smallest field ever totaled 20 lifters. Exactly four of them were from east of the Mississippi River – Tim Piper from Macomb, Ill., about 30 miles east of the Mississippi; Randy Smith, who rode his motorcycle all the way to Salina from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan; Dennis and Flossie Mitchell, who drove in from Cleveland; and Denny and Judy Habecker, who drove from Lebanon in eastern Pennsylvania.
Al took a brutal financial beating because he was looking for up to 50 lifters. Not only did the USAWA lifters let him down, but many of his friends in the Highland Games and the Strongman crowd who had promised to make the meet a roaring success were nowhere to be found.
The USAWA has a standing policy that anyone who loses money because of lack of support will be compensated for that loss. That’s what our treasury is all about. Al refused to accept the USAWA check. We’ll figure out some way to get his expenses covered – maybe we’ll buy his wife a new car.
It is surely time for the USAWA membership to look inwardly and see where this organization wants to go in the future. Twenty lifters in a national championship is an absolute insult to Al Myers – and to anyone else who dares to take on USAWA events in the future.
Back to the positive – we had our first 90-year-old in a national title meet. Al’s 90 year old grandfather, Clyde, was on hand all day and did five of the six lifts – choosing to by-pass the harness lift.
2006 USAWA National Championships
June 17th, 2006
Meet Director: Al Myers
Emcee: Bill Clark
Scorekeepers: Scott Tully, Karla Barnhart
Loaders: Ryan Batchman, Tom Maxey
Officials: Thom Van Vleck, Bob Burtzloff, Chuck Cookson, Eric Todd, Doug Longbine, Mark Mitchell
Lifts: One-Arm Snatch, Clean and Press Heels Together, Bench Press Feet in Air, Steinborn, Deadlift 12″ Base, Harness Lift
Men: Top Ten Placings
1. Al Myers, Kansas
2. Ian Reel, Kansas
3. Bret Carter, Nebraska
4. Joe Garcia, Missouri
5. Dan Wagman, Colorado
6. Laynne Burnett, Kansas
7. Dan Mather, Kansas
8. Tim Pinkerton, Nebraska
9. Randy Smith, Michigan
10. Darren Barnhart, Kansas
Women: Top Two Placings
1. Amorkor Ollennuking, Missouri
2. Stephanie Beemer, Kansas
Best Lifter Awards:
Women Junior – Stephanie Beemer
Women Master – Amorkor Ollennuking
Women Open – Amorkor Ollennuking
Men Junior – Ian Reel
Men 20-39 Age Under 175lb – Dan Mather
Men 20-39 Age 176lb-200lb – Dan Wagman
Men 20-39 Age 201lb-231lb – Bret Carter
Men 20-39 Age 232lb-265lb – Al Myers
Men 20-39 Age 266lb-300lb – Darren Barnhart
Men 40-49 Age Group – Laynne Burnett
Men 50-59 Age Group – Joe Garcia
Men 60-69 Age Group – Denny Habecker
Men 70-79 Age Group – Dennis Mitchell
Men 90 Plus Age Group – Clyde Myers
Men Open – Al Myers
Men Master – Joe Garcia